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For Pete Griffin '60, His Saint Michael's Education Was Priceless!

Pete Griffin supports Saint Michael's College through a gift in his estate.

Pete Griffin '60 supports Saint Michael's College through a gift in his estate.

Growing up on a farm, Pete was fortunate to have the support of family and neighbors, who encouraged his participation in education and sports. His abilities paid off when he applied to Saint Michael's and was awarded several small scholarships that made it possible to attend.

Pete says that he immediately felt the support from faculty and staff and that being on campus was "like coming home."

Pete has many fond memories of his time here and has contributed financially to the College almost every year since his graduation. It was a natural progression for Pete and his wife, Joanne, to include Saint Michael's in their estate plans. They chose a charitable gift annuity (CGA) through which the College will receive the gift upon their passing; between now and then, Pete receives quarterly distributions from the annuity. He considers this a "win-win" as both the College and he benefit. In addition, the Griffins received a tax deduction on their long form at the time they established the annuity, and the quarterly distributions are taxed by the IRS at a lower rate.

"This was so easy to set up. I only wish I had done it sooner!" Pete says.

Pete has a standout memory from his time in Winooski Park. In March of 1958, the Saint Michael's basketball team went to the NCAA tournament in Evansville, Indiana as part of the final eight. They arrived in Evansville with little money and even fewer supplies, but they had a fantastic time, winning themselves a spot in the finals, where they lost to the University of South Dakota, 75 to 53. Along the way, they were dubbed the "Iron Knights" for not substituting a player until the final game. The tournament was covered by the Associated Press so they even put Saint Michael's and Vermont on the map!

Pete says that at St. Mike's he learned to take responsibility in all aspects of his life, including academics, ROTC and athletics. Pete was given a number of student leadership opportunities including chair of inter-class activities (coordinating game logistics) and dorm proctor, where he was responsible for 40 students. Pete also credits the College with giving him a sound religious foundation.

While Pete trained as an actuary, he became more interested in youth sports and working with young adults, so he ended up teaching math and coaching sports in public education for 33 years, 17 of which were as a high school principal. Upon his "retirement" Pete became an adjunct professor at several colleges in the Albany, New York area for another 17 years.

Pete fondly remembers former president, Rev. Gerald Dupont, head baseball coach, assistant basketball coach, and assistant athletic director, Ed Markey, John Hartnett, Vincent Naramore and Warren Sparks for making a positive and memorable impact on his Saint Michael's experience.

"I am so extremely pleased to see that today's faculty and staff continue to interact closely with students," Pete notes.

Pete credits George "Jerry" Kowalczyk '60 and his wife, Pauline for introducing him to his wife, Joanne. Jerry and Pauline stood up for them at their wedding and they regularly stay in touch. He's also in touch with classmates Ron Von Stetina and John Zurlo.

When asked what advice Pete would give to today's students, he quickly says, "Enjoy the holistic experience that St. Mike's is giving you—the academics, the religious foundation, the leadership, service and athletic opportunities and the wonderful sense of community. The total package is priceless!"

Contact Ms. Phung Pham at 802-654-2646 or to learn more today.

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Learn What Matters

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Saint Michael's College a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

“I give, bequeath, and devise to Saint Michael’s College, an educational organization established by law at One Winooski Park, Box 256, Colchester, Vermont 05439, whose Federal Tax ID number is 03-0179403 [here follows the dollar amount or percentage of the gift, or an accurate description of the securities, insurance policies, retirement funds, or the amount or percentage of the residual estate, or the real estate or other assets given].”

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to Saint Michael's College or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Saint Michael's College as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Saint Michael's College as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and Saint Michael's College where you agree to make a gift to Saint Michael's College and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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